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MES book fundraiser was slimy affair for principal, teacher

Staff Writer

Horrible Harry and the Green Slime. The Slime Wars. A Brief History of Slime.

Whatever the fascination children have with sticky, gooey, slime, authors have picked up on it, as evidenced by the titles of these children’s books.

Like their students, Marion Elementary School principal Justin Wasmuth and fourth-grade teacher Tina Hague may have a new appreciation for slime after being doused with buckets of it Friday as a reward for MES student fundraising activities.

The MES Parent Advisory Council sponsored a Scholastic book fair at the school in late August. Associated with the fair was an activity to raise money to purchase books for classrooms, and to donate to Marion Community Christmas as well.

“The kids had a contest between the classrooms. Whoever collected the most coins, the teacher of that class gets slimed,” book fair chair Tracy Lanning said.

To sweeten the slime pot, a goal of $400 was set for the entire school. If the goal was met, Wasmuth would also be doused in slime.

Children asked parents and searched their homes for spare change to donate.

Michael Nelson, a student in Sarah Waddell’s fifth-grade class, took his giving one giant step farther.

“There was a note in his bag that he took $40 out of money he was saving to buy a motorcycle,” Lanning said. “It said he wanted the children to have a good Christmas.”

“We collected $436.27, and we bought 100 books to be distributed among the classrooms and Community Christmas,” Lanning said.

That sealed Wasmuth’s fate, and the efforts of Hague’s class earned her the dubious honor as well.

“My Scholastic lady said that’s a really good amount to collect for little rewards,” Lanning said.

All MES students gathered Friday afternoon on the soccer field for the ‘sliming.’ Four children were chosen through a drawing to douse Wasmuth and Hague with four buckets of thick, clear slime, while the rest of the assembly shrieked and laughed with delight.

“It was about as thick as it could be and hard as it could be to get off,” Wasmuth said. “It was everything you expect in slime and maybe more.”

Wasmuth was gratified with the response to the fundraising activity.

“I think that it just shows how much this community takes care of others,” Wasmuth said. “When we can raise $400 in five days in this community just by collecting change, that’s quite impressive.”

Margo Yates, official contact for Marion Community Christmas, said they welcome the annual donations from the book sale fundraiser.

“It’s a huge help to us every year, because we like to give each child a book,” Yates said. “It helps them, it helps us, it’s a real good partnership.”

Lanning reported the book fair itself set a sales record this year, $3,245.94. Those sales help the school as well.

“All the profits we take in Scholastic dollars. Fifty percent of that we got was $1,622.97 that we gave to the library,” she said.

Had the PAC chosen to take their profits in cash, Scholastic would only have matched 25 percent of the total.

Others beyond Marion’s classrooms and Marion Community Christmas will benefit from the fundraising as well. Scholastic will match the funds raised by donating books in that amount to three nonprofit organizations.

“Scholastic will give books to Marines Toys for Tots Foundation, Kids in Need Foundation, and Kids in Distressed Situations,” Lanning said.

Last modified Sept. 29, 2011

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